When temperatures drop, it’s natural for you to want to stay inside. In some parts of the world (including Park City), people tend to seek solace indoors during the coldest, darkest part of winter.
While some might loath the inability to accomplish tasks outside, such as yard work, others find multiple ways to keep busy with indoor projects. Easy, COVID-friendly services such as no-contact delivery and curbside pickup make finding the ingredients you need easier and safer than ever.
The winter months are ideal for indoor home improvement and maintenance projects. If you’re planning for a spring or summer home sale, it’s never too early to get started with your home prep. This time of year is perfect!
It is widely known to real estate professionals that builders and contractors are busiest in spring and summer, meaning it’s easier to hire one now for help if you need it. Also, building materials and labor for home renovations are the cheapest between October and March due to low demand.
This all adds up to an advantage in doing home improvement projects during this off-season, especially if you value the money in your wallet. While the winters in Park City can be challenging, we’ve prepared these inexpensive and easy home improvements for the winter.
Seal Up Cracks Around The House
While often an overlooked aspect of home improvement, sealing up your house’s cracks can be a vital project that significantly increases your home’s value and provides comfort. If your house has cracks, air can seep in and out of it, frequently leaving your home cold and drafty.
Not to mention that cracks are a warm, welcoming invitation for pests to escape the cold and snow.
Sealing leaks and adding insulation can save you an average of 15% in heating and cooling costs. Sealing leaks alone around windows and doors and in the attic can reduce this airflow by about 25%. When it’s -10 degrees outside, you’ll be glad you chose to do this.
Saving on energy bills is a noticeable improvement every homeowner loves. Keeping more cash in your pocket and helping your house appeal to eco-friendly buyers is a win/win. Millennials now comprise almost 40% of home buyers. Research shows they have a strong preference for green home features.
Feeling a draft is an easy way to know if your home has air leaks. But you won’t always feel every leak. So turn on all your house lights, step outside after dusk, and look for any gaps around windows and doors.
Insulate The Attic, Ducts, And Foundation
Living in Park City, you probably have some insulation already. But, if your attic isn’t well insulated, you’re guaranteed to lose air and heat.
The U.S. Department of Energy recommends sealing any areas of your home that need it before moving on to the insulation. An insulation contractor can help you determine how much and what type of insulating material your home needs.
However, if you want to tackle this yourself, the higher the R-value, the more effective the insulation is.
Maintain Your Heating System
Another winter essential every homeowner needs to think about is maintaining the one thing keeping you from the bitter elements of winter: your heating system.
If you have a boiler, keep an eye on the boiler’s water level to make sure it doesn’t get too low, and check and change your heating system filters.
Most HVAC and furnace filters need to be changed at a minimum every three months, something many homeowners tend to neglect. Consider changing them once a month if you have pets, smoke, live in a windy area, have a large family, or have a fireplace.
Make The Switch To LED Light Bulbs
Residential LED light bulbs use at least 75% less energy and last 25 times longer than incandescent lighting, boosting your home’s energy-efficient appeal.
LED lights used to be very expensive. However, many homeowners have switched to LED in recent years as LED prices continue to decline.
One small caveat to LED lighting is it can skew the colors for professional real estate photos. Because of this, it is essential to communicate your lighting choices with your real estate professional so they can white balance accordingly.
Repainting, most homeowner’s favorite improvement, is a fun way to liven things up around your home. Something as simple as changing from a neutral color to a slightly vibrant shade can increase the appeal and transform your house’s overall mood. Just be careful about not going too wild with your color choices. Ask your realtor for guidance if you have any questions.
Even though it’s chilly in the winter months, make sure you crack the windows to let in fresh air while you’re painting. Or, consider using low-VOC paint so that you don’t breathe in harmful fumes.
Finally Tackle Your Storage Spaces
When spring and summer arrive, you’re probably not going to want to spend your time sifting through piles of junk in your basement.
Winter is a great time to work on getting organized and finally sorting out your “storage” spaces for all of your extra things. While this can be daunting at first, devote time every week to decluttering and organizing what you decide to keep.
Any charity donations can be a tax deduction for that year.
Don’t tackle the entire house at once. If you do, it’ll be overwhelming, and you’ll find yourself disillusioned and exhausted. Start small and plan your efforts. Focus on one part of the house or space and work your way out. Even for just 10 minutes at a time.
This way, you’ll be able to see the progress you’re making.
Evaluate Your Bathrooms
Most people loath the task staring you right in the face: take a look at your bathrooms. Bathrooms build up gunk and germs over time, making them ugly and unhygienic.
Bathrooms are a great winter project if you’re looking to sell in the spring. Buyers love fresh new bathrooms. There are plenty of ways to make simple efforts towards your bathroom without breaking the bank.
Updates like replacing a faucet, re-grouting tile, or repainting are relatively easy for any homeowner. But if you get more ambitious, like replacing a toilet or adding a new sink or counter, you might want to consult a professional.
While these projects might not seem like much, they go a long way towards helping you improve the value and appearance of your home. The chilly winter months (especially in Park City) are the perfect time to do these improvements. You’ll freshen your home and make it appealing to buyers. Or yourself if you aren’t selling in your immediate future.
If you are interested in buying or selling in Park City, consider using Jensen and Company. We have extensive knowledge of Park City real estate and can help you make a perfect match for your lifestyle and budget.